Nintendo was ordered on Wednesday to pay $21M to Anascape, a small East Texas gaming company, for infringing on a patent for gaming controllers.
The lawsuit was originally filed in 2006 by Anascape, which targeted both Microsoft and Nintendo for infringement of 12 patents issued between 1999 and 2005. Anascape sought compensation, including interest, from the revenues generated by both companies as a result of the claimed infringements.
A jury found that Nintendo had infringed on the Anascape patents in the design of the GameCube, WaveBird and Wii Classic controllers.
According to comments recorded by the Associated Press, Nintendo spokesman Charlie Scibetta said that the company will seek an appeal and hopes that the infringement award would be reduced significantly. No infringement was found with the motion-sensing scheme used on the Wii Remote or Nunchuk.
Microsoft avoided the jury ruling as it had settled with Anascape on terms that remain confidential.
While $21M may sound like a hefty sum, it’s not quite as painful as the $91 million Sony had to hand over to Immersion for its use of force feedback vibration technology. Sony and Immersion coming to an agreement then ruffled the feathers of Microsoft, who in turned launched its own legal complaint.
Sony, who was oddly not a part of the Anascape suit, recently launched its third-generation DualShock controller in North America.